The holiday shopping season is in full swing, and Starbucks would love to offer one-stop shopping so its caffeinated customers needn't bother with any other retailer. Why not pick up some gifts while refuelling during holiday shopping?
To help make that happen, the 41-year-old company collaborated with funkster designers Rodarte, the fashion label known for its hip clothing and Black Swan costumes, to create a few limited edition stocking stuffers for its North American holiday collection.
Rodarte has designed for Starbucks a tumbler as well as a tote bag, reusable up sleeve, and a Starbucks card. If it appears that the Starbucks logo is a bit blurry and pixelated, you don't need to get your eyes checked because it is — a daring choice for a brand that put so much energy and cash into its logo redesign almost two years ago.
Rodarte, launched in 2005 by sisters Laura and Kate Mulleavy is more known for its indie womenswear so it had to adapt a little to the more mainstream, unisex audience."Our clothing is specialized," Laura said in an interview with the AP, "and when we are thinking of Rodarte, we choose things that say who we are as designers, but we're not limited to that. We like the idea of collaborations and putting our thought process somewhere else."
"What was really exciting was working with a brand that has such a signature visual identity and culture,” Kate told Racked.com. "Everyone recognizes the Starbucks logo. Laura and I immediately immersed ourselves in trying to find a way to play with that visual culture and reinterpreting it. It was interesting to start from something that was very iconic and known—and with products, not clothing. As a clothing designer, you think about what you're making, not what you're putting on it.”
Starbucks isn’t too concerned that Rodarte isn’t a household name, the AP notes. "We felt we had a broad audience of customers. We look for unique and differentiated, not necessarily looking for 'mainstream,'” Samie Barr, VP of category brand management for Starbucks, told AP. “People buy with their eyes."
And if Rodarte isn’t your thing, Starbucks is hoping its other offerings – seasonal drinks such as Gingerbread Latte or coffee- and tea-related products — might do the trick on the gift-giving front. And if it doesn’t, consider the brand fanatics in China who'd kill for even one pixel of this holiday swag.